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2011/0032(NLE) - 28/03/2011 Legislative proposal

PURPOSE: to conclude an Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and Australia pursuant to Article XXIV:6 and Article XXVIII of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994 relating to the modification of concessions in the schedules of Bulgaria and Romania in the course of their accession to the European Union.

PROPOSED ACT: Council Decision.

BACKGROUND: on 29 January 2007, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with certain other Members of the World Trade Organization under Article XXIV:6 of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994 in the course of the accessions to the European Union of Bulgaria and Romania.

Negotiations were conducted by the Commission within the framework of the negotiating directives adopted by the Council. They were concluded and the Agreement was initialled on 15 June 2010.

The Agreement was signed on behalf of the Union but subject to its conclusion at a later date.

It is now necessary to approve the Agreement on behalf of the European Union.

IMPACT ASSESSMENT: no impact assessment was carried out.

LEGAL BASIS: first subparagraph of Article 207(4), in conjunction with Article 218(6)(a)(v) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).

CONTENT: by this proposal, the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and Australia pursuant to Article XXIV:6 and Article XXVIII of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994 relating to the modification of concessions in the schedules of Bulgaria and Romania in the course of their accession to the European Union is hereby approved on behalf of the Union.

The text of the Agreement is attached to this Decision. For further details on the content of the Agreement, please refer to the summary of the previous initial legislative document dated 14/02/2011.

BUDGETARY IMPLICATION: the proposal has no implication for the Union budget.